World Elephant Day : Here are 5 you need to know about Mysuru Gajapayana
World Elephant Day: Elephants have always been an integral part of Dasara celebrations in Mysuru.
Mysuru which is otherwise called as the heritage city in Karnataka is known for its Dasara celebrations and countdown for the massive festivities this year has already begun. Elephants have always been an integral part of Dasara celebrations in Mysuru and the first batch of nine elephants have already arrived at Mysuru palace on August 10, as a part of Gajapayana.
On World Elephant Day, here are the five things that you need to know about the ‘Gajapayana’
Gajapayana is a tradition of 14 elephants marching to Mysuru Palace from Veeranahosahalli which is located at the outskirts of Nagarahole tiger reserve, to participate in grand Dasara celebrations.
The elephant herd is led by an elephant named Abhimanyu and he will also carry the golden howdah on Vijayadashami.
The elephants arrive in batches to Mysuru from Veeranahosahalli and they rest at Aranya Bhavan for three days before reaching the mighty Mysuru palace.
Earlier, the elephants used to march around 70 kilometers to reach Mysuru palace but considering the health issues of these elephants, the forest officials decided to transport them through trucks and cut a majority of walking distance. However, they still march in the city of Mysuru to reach the palace.
The tradition of Gajapayana was said to be started in the year 1610 A.D at Srirangapatna, a temple town which is located around 20-kilometer from Mysuru.
This year, the Dasara celebrations will be held at Mysuru from September 26 to October 5 and Abhimanyu will also lead the herd during ‘Jumbo Savari’ on Vijayadashami. The first batch of nine elephants were received grandly and the second batch is also expected to arrive soon.